Temporomandibular dysfunction or TMD includes a wide range of disorders that often overlap. They include muscle issues that affect jaw movement, facial pain around the jaw joint and a variety of other problems that can show up within the joint itself. This variety makes diagnosis and treatment challenging. An accurate diagnosis is critical for successful treatment.
Most times if the problem is muscular or within the joint, it will get better over time. For this reason our Sidney Harbour Dental use conservative treatments first. But in some cases, surgery or other procedures, such as injections, may be recommended.
- Soft foods — If you eat foods that don’t require much chewing, your jaw has a chance to rest and heal.
- Moist heat, jaw exercise and ice packs — Some people find that a good routine of moist heat, exercise and ice helps relive TMD symptoms fairly quickly. To do this start by applying moist heat to the side of your face and temple. This relaxes tight muscles that may be causing pain and spasms. You should maintain the moist heat for about 10 minutes. Then do a few simple jaw stretchs. After that follow up with some ice on your jaw for about 5 minutes.
- Medicine — Our typical suggestions are aspirin or ibuprofen, these will help relieve most muscle pain and swelling. We also may prescribe muscle relaxants to help loosen tight jaw muscles. These can be useful to people who grind or clench their teeth causing some form of TMD. Sometimes we may prescribe antianxiety medicines to help relieve stress that can make TMD worse. Another prescription we may make is for Antidepressants in low doses to reduce or control pain. In small doses, the drugs do nothing for depression but can help immensely with the pain.
Sometimes, even with the use of these less invasive treatments, the TMD can continue to cause pain. Sidney Harbour Dental have several advanced treatments available in the rare case of patients not seeing improvement through the non invasive treatments. These Advanced treatments have all been effective in treating chronic TMD.
- Electrical nerve stimulation
- Trigger-point injections
For more information about TMD treatment and our other advanced dental care solutions, please contact us to schedule your appointment.
So happy with the level of service we received yesterday. Everyone was super nice and communicated clearly with what was being done and what needed to be done. They were also flexible, working with what appointment days and times best suited our hectic schedule. We are so grateful!
- Carrie Wheeler